The Archived by Victoria Schwab
The Archived #1
Release Date: January 22nd, 2013
Number of Pages: 328
Imagine a place where the dead rest on shelves like books.
Each body has a story to tell, a life seen in pictures that only Librarians can read. The dead are called Histories, and the vast realm in which they rest is the Archive.
Da first brought Mackenzie Bishop here four years ago, when she was twelve years old, frightened but determined to prove herself. Now Da is dead, and Mac has grown into what he once was, a ruthless Keeper, tasked with stopping often—violent Histories from waking up and getting out. Because of her job, she lies to the people she loves, and she knows fear for what it is: a useful tool for staying alive.
Being a Keeper isn’t just dangerous—it’s a constant reminder of those Mac has lost. Da’s death was hard enough, but now her little brother is gone too. Mac starts to wonder about the boundary between living and dying, sleeping and waking. In the Archive, the dead must never be disturbed. And yet, someone is deliberately altering Histories, erasing essential chapters. Unless Mac can piece together what remains, the Archive itself might crumble and fall.
In this haunting, richly imagined novel, Victoria Schwab reveals the thin lines between past and present, love and pain, trust and deceit, unbearable loss and hard-won redemption.
I fell in love with Victoria Schwab’s writing in her first book The Near Witch. I’m glad to say that I was far from disappointed with her second novel, The Archived. It was different, but some of the aspects of her book that made me love it are still present in this. What really got me excited for this book was the premise. Dead people stacked on shelves like books? That got me interested. Victoria Schwab created an original story get set in an old hotel now turned into an apartment building, creating a strange atmosphere. I really like the idea of the Library and the Keepers, and I found it to be presented in a really interesting way.
The story follows Mackenzie, a sixteen-years-old keeper who took over her Da’s job after his death four years ago. As a narrator, Mac was interesting to follow, and her voice made it easy for me to get into her story. One of the things I liked about Mac was to see her interact with her family. Her relationship with her parents might be strained thanks to her lies and her brother’s death, but there was something realistic to it. The flashbacks also gave us an insight on her relationship with her Da, which was really useful to understand how Mac became a Keeper.
There were some really interesting secondary characters in this book. I really liked Roland, one of the Librarians. I love how he acted like some kind of mentor to her. Then, there are the romantic interests, which surprised me a little. I thought there would only be one love interest, but there were two, but it didn’t really give us a love triangle. I knew of Wesley (guyliner!!), and I was disappointed to see her fall for another guy. After all, I could I not swoon over Wesley. He is totally addicting, with his sweet and fun personality. He was just an amazing character.
Overall, The Archived was a novel that really pleased me. The fast-paced story kept me hooked. Victoria Schwab’s writing made me love that book. She created an eerie atmosphere I cannot wait to go back to with the upcoming sequel. Victoria Schwab secured herself a spot on my favorite author’s list with her sophomore novel.
About the Author
Victoria is the product of a British mother, a Beverly Hills father, and a southern upbringing. Because of this, she has been known to say "tom-ah-toes," "like," and "y'all."
She also tells stories.
She loves fairy tales, and folklore, and stories that make her wonder if the world is really as it seems.